Jack the Ripper and Ryanism.


Ryan chatters about a lot of things. Constantly. I try my best to listen to most of them, and engage in educational discourses about them. Although sometimes I just say ‘uh huh’ ‘uh huh’ not really hearing a word. I hope  there are at least some other  mammas out there who won’t raise their eyebrows at that 🙂 !

It was Ku Klux Klan for a while. He finished reading They Called Themselves KKK: The Birth of an American Terrorist Group by Susan Campbell Bartoletti and then a fiction by Sharon Draper – Stella by Starlight, a historical fiction about KKK. We had animated discussions about hate, segregation, human courage, standing up for human right. I loved every discussion. The latest obsession, however, is proving to be a bit dicey – Jack the Ripper. He started talking animatedly about this mysterious killer who killed only women and whose identity, till date, is a mystery. What else can ignite a child’s imagination than unsolved mystery, murder, gore? I have half heartedly answered questions and did not offer up Google like I usually do so he can conduct further research. I felt I needed to filter the research on this particular interest.

Tonight at dinner, while stabbing half heartedly at his spinach salad, Ryan told the family that he has discovered more information on Jack the Ripper.

Gulp. I waited. Sahana waited. Sean looked at us with questioning eyes – what is happening?

‘I found out that Jack the Ripper only killed roaming women in London. So for example, if  you or Sahana decided to take a pleasant walk at night, you would get killed by Jack the Ripper. I think it was very wrong of a Jack the Ripper to kill but more so, kill women who just wanted to take a walk at night? That is very bad. And I am sorry to say, the ladies of London at that time were not very smart. If they knew there was a killer killing women if they walked at night why would they go out for walks after dinner anyway? Shouldn’t they have just stayed at home? At least they would have been alive!!’

I asked if I could write a blog on the information he gave the family about this nasty killer. He agreed I should. This concerns women’s rights. I guffawed, got up from my chair, went around and gave his rosy cheeks a big smooch. Sahana called out from the kitchen, ‘Give him a kiss from me too, Mom. Your son is adorable. You are adorable, Ryno!’ Sean ruffled his hair as he passed by him, chuckling.

After the day’s chore was done, as I was sitting down to write the blog, Sahana came to me excitedly, ‘I know why he said Jack the Ripper killed roaming women. He asked me who did the Jack the Ripper kill and I said ladies of the night. He, of course, asked me who they were. I got nervous because he did not know anything about prostitution so I said ladies who roamed the streets of London at night!’

She shed light on this particular Ryanism and we both giggled out of Ryan’s earshot. Oh Innocence, you are precious and so short-lived!

I collect these Ryanisms to share with friends and family. I collect them also for me, so  when he is a man of the world, I will remember his innocence and childhood and perhaps share stories when we are all gathered,

‘Do you know when you were just a little boy, you said…?’

By the way, I think Jack the Ripper is almost on his way out, I feel him fading away. He is being usurped by…….none other than…….Hannibal Lecter!! Oh Joy!!

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